Fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) with rRNA-targeted oligonucleotide probes facilitates the rapid and specific identification of individual microbial cells in their natural environments. Over the past year there have been a number of methodological developments in this area and new applications of FISH in microbial ecology and biotechnology have been reported.
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We would like to thank Barbara MacGregor for critically reading the manuscript. The original work of the authors has been supported by the Max Planck Society, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, the Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung and the Fonds der chemischen Industrie.